Worcester, MA --- Amber Legare (Chicopee, MA) registered a key block with 23 seconds remaining and Mount Holyoke drained all four of its free throw attempts in the last 16.7 seconds as the visiting Lyons withstood a late WPI rally to defeat the Engineers 43-38 in the NEWMAC women's basketball opener for both squads.
Mount Holyoke is 3-0 to start the season for the first time in over a decade. WPI is 1-2 overall on the young season. The win was the first for the Lyons in the series since the championship game of the 2007 NEWMAC Tournament, snapping a string of 12 consecutive defeats.
Trailing by six points with just under three minutes left, the Engineers got back in it with a Dani Davis (East Granby, CT) jumper with 2:41 to go. After a stop, Kelly Morgan (Brookline, NH) canned a 3-pointer from the left corner to slice the advantage to 39-38 with just over two minutes remaining.
The WPI defense stiffened on its next two possessions and the Crimson and Gray had a chance for the lead in the closing seconds but Legare swatted away a layup attempt. Kate Karraker (Morgantown, WV) connected on a pair of free throws with 16.7 left to push the bulge back to three. WPI had a good look at a 3-pointer to tie in the waning seconds but saw it rim out and Genelle Green (Windsor, CT) iced the Lyons victory with a pair of freebies with 2.6 seconds left.
Karraker canned five 3-pointers on way to a game-best 19 points. Legare ended with a 10 points and 11 rebounds to record the game's only double-double while Green filled the stat sheets with seven points, seven boards and a game-high three steals.
Siena Mamayek (Melrose, MA) connected on a pair of second half conventional 3-point plays to pace WPI with 10 points. For the game, the senior tri-captain nailed 4-of-7 field goal attempts. Davis netted eight points and nine rebounds to flirt with a double-double while Morgan also registered eight points, including a pair of trifectas. Amaia Gritsko (Milford, CT) chipped in with six points and six boards while Jessica Larson (San Diego, CA) added four points and four boards in just eight minutes in her season debut.
Both teams continue their season with NEWMAC contests on Saturday. WPI gets crosstown rival Clark at 2pm in a rematch of last weekend's City Tournament final while Mount Holyoke ventures to Norton to face Wheaton at 1pm.